Chelsea have accepted an offer for out-of-favour defender Alex from fellow Premier League club Queens Park Rangers.
QPR will now have to convince the 29-year-old Brazilian to make the switch to Loftus Road and become Mark Hughes' first signing - amid reports that he no longer wants to remain in London.
Chelsea are happy to let him leave, as they prepare to conclude the long-expected deal for Bolton central defender Gary Cahill. Alex handed in a transfer request in November, and hasn't been near Andre Villas-Boas' first-team since.
On Thursday Villas-Boas confirmed that Alex is free to leave, although he suggested other clubs may yet rival QPR for his signature.
"We have respected Alex's transfer request so the market's open for him," he said. "We're just trying to reach the level of proposal we think is good for the player.
"We'll present anything to the player. He has to make a decision. He has generated interest from a lot of clubs."